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How to fix your overhead squat?

04 Jul Posted by in Mobility | Comments

A blast from the past – Nancy Challenge in 2010

In light of the skill of the month and the workout today – Nancy, I have re-posted an excerpt from Tabata Times about overhead squat issues.  Please take a look below:

Overhead Squat Problem #1: Ankle/Hip Mobility

When you attempt your OHS, have you noticed that your toes turn out as you get lower in the squat? If so, your ankles are not dorsiflexing enough to achieve the proper depth; as a result, your body is finding a way to accomplish what you are asking of it by spinning the toes out. Most of the time this will be at the cost of the knees caving inwards and the weight shifting towards the ball of the foot, putting excessive strain on the medial side of the knee. This will cause your performance to suffer due to instability and the inability of the posterior chain to fire in this poor position. It will put the strain primarily on the quads and can cause overuse injuries over time.

Does your low back round and butt tuck under at the bottom of your squat? This also will create a unstable position and a potentially harmful position when loaded. When the back rounds, it essentially turns off the glutes and hamstrings in the bottom of the squat. These large muscle groups need to be incorporated into the movement if large loads are the intent.

You could probably squat 45 pounds all day with your low back rounding at the bottom, but 245 pounds would be a whole different story. The bottom of your squat will be the point where your low back starts to round until you can gain the mobility in the hips and ankles and the stability in the lumbar spine to squat all the way to the bottom.

The Fix:

Grab hold of a rack or other solid object for balance and squat down to the bottom of your squat keeping your back flat. Now one side at a time, shift your weight forward flexing ankle as much as possible. Be sure that the heel stays down, and the knee moves forward — not in — out over the toes. Spend at least two minutes every other day working on this and you should see a noticeable improvement within two weeks or less. This can also do wonders for tight hips. While you are in the bottom, use your elbow to push the knees out, stretching out the adductors. Use the rack to pull your hips toward your ankles in the bottom. Work hard to keep your back flat.

Workout of the Day

Prone to sprint :15 x 16 intervals


“Nancy”compare to April 23rd, 2014
5 rounds for time of:
400m run
15 overhead squats (65/95)

Zone 3 – scale overhead squats to 45/65
Zone 2 – scale to 35/45
Zone 1 – scale as needed (including # of rounds)

Couch stretch- 2 min per side
Calf stretch- 2 min per side

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